CORE VALUES VISION
CORE VALUES & VISION
Our Core Values & Vision booklet is an attempt to provide a brief summary of what Threshold Ministries is and what our vision is as a ministry and missional community. Threshold Ministries has a rich history, which dates back to our founder, Wilson Carlile and his ministry in central London UK. Carlile’s passion for reaching people with the Good News of Jesus Christ must be central to our focus in order to remain connected to our reason for existence. This ministry, launched a few blocks away from Buckingham Palace, has spread internationally to over 9 countries. Our ministry in Canada has grown and developed tremendously since 1886 when a ministry team crossed the Atlantic to mobilize congregations to reach out into their communities. Despite changes, which included locations and property, appearance and our name – our mandate has remained the same and continues to provide us with the strong foundation in which we continue to discern opportunities to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ in Canada. Jesus challenged His disciples to, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” (Matthew 28:19-20a). Our Evangelists have continued to respond diligently to this challenge – often requiring relocating to remote and rural areas; finding ways to respond to need when few resources were present; and giving fully of themselves in every situation. As we look ahead, to beyond 2016, we must continue to be willing to have the freedom to respond to the same
This document provides a framework and outline about how Threshold Ministries will continue to live out its mandate and respond to the need that surrounds us. My prayer is that God will continue to bless our attempt to be ambassadors of His rule and reign, and to be a people who practice the presence of God and proclaim His Gospel, so that His will may be done on Earth as it is in heaven. A nobody, trying to tell everybody about Somebody,
Shawn C. Branch National Director/Mission Leader â€˘ Threshold Ministries
CORE VALUES & VISION
TABLE OF CONTENTS FOREWORD 3-4 IDENTITY 7-12 OUR GRACED HISTORY 7-12
A Vision A Beginning A Mandate
IDENTITY 15-24 OUR PRESENT STORY 15-24
Our Mandate Our Evangelists Our Community Our Mission
PURPOSE 26-31 DIRECTION 26-31
Training â€“ Threshold School of Ministry Resourcing The Mission Field
OUR FOUNDATION 32-33 STATEMENT OF FAITH 32-33 OUR LEADERSHIP 35-36
Board National Director
Why Give? How to Give?
Arthur Casey (First Canadian Director)
Wilson Carlile (Founder, Church Army UK)
IDENTITY OUR GRACED HISTORY A Vision Our founder, during his time, was a brilliant businessman who achieved great success at a young age and helped lead his family business into new heights. By today’s standards, Wilson Carlile, would have been on the cutting edge of his industry and no doubt be on the cover of Forbes magazine. A non-believer at the time, Carlile lost everything at the height of the Great Depression of 1873, including his health. Cared for by his aunt and sister during illness, he was given a copy of Mackay’s Grace and Truth. This reading proved instrumental in his conversion, “I have seen the crucified and risen Lord as truly as if He had made Himself visible to my bodily sight. That is for me the conclusive evidence of His existence. He touched my heart, and old desires and hopes left it. In their place came the new thought that I might serve Him and His poor and suffering brethren.” Following this, he first joined the Plymouth Brethren who worked among the youth at-risk in London. Soon after he joined the Church of England. In 1875, Dwight L. Moody held his rallies in Islington and Carlile offered his help. Ira Sankey, the musical director, recognised the talent and placed him at the harmonium where he accompanied the singing of the huge crowds who came to hear Moody. Following this mission he went with Moody to Camberwell where he chose and trained the choir for the South London mission. As a result, he gained a solid understanding of the techniques of evangelism and the part that music can play.
Discerning a call to ministry, he was accepted by the London School of Divinity and after 18 months passed his examinations, having been ordained a deacon in St. Paul’s Cathedral in 1880. Following this, he was accepted as an associate priest at St. Mary Abbots, Kensington. During this time, he wanted to reach people, including the guard at Kensington Palace, who had nothing to do with the church. Since none of his efforts to bring working-class people into the posh congregation worked, he decided to hold open-air meetings to attract individuals as they passed by. As time went on, he drew others to help him and people began gathering in such large numbers that the police became concerned with the crowds. Not long after, Carlile resigned from St Mary’s to fully devote his time and energy to reaching the marginalized with the Gospel. In 1882, he established Church Army with a vision to train ordinary Christian men and women to reach those most in need with the Gospel. In 1883 Church Army was officially recognised by the Church of England. Wilson Carlile was well respected for his commitment and his ministry. It was important to him, that even if the church’s leadership did not understand, that they be aware of how God’s Kingdom was being furthered in their community. Through his approach and personality, by 1925, Church Army was widely recognized as the largest home mission organization in the UK. Carlile was appointed a Companion of Honour (CH) in 1926.
Students & Supporters in 1932.
50th Anniversary, 1979.
Inner City Boys Club, Toronto 1963.
Student, Class of 1973.
A Beginning As the evangelistic work began to spread across the UK, because of the Church of England/Anglican Communion connection, teams began going out to other countries. In 1886, the first team arrived in Canada and visited several locations in eastern Canada. In 1926, Arthur Casey, his wife and a team came over to lead a series of missions throughout the Anglican Diocese of Fredericton. Following this, the House of Bishops passed a motion to establish an evangelistic ministry in Canada. In 1929, in a small house on Howland Avenue in downtown Toronto ON, that dream became a reality. Established independently of the Anglican Church of Canada, we have remained connected to this part of the Body of Christ throughout our history. Following an intensive ministry formation program, six candidates were commissioned as Evangelists in 1930. These six were only the beginning as the first few decades saw hundreds of men being trained for ministry and sent to the far corners of Canada. Momentum grew rapidly and it was an encouraging season. When World War II began, like many groups and ministries across the country, we began to see a decrease in students. Evangelists had been enlisted to serve and by 1947, there were no students in training and only six Evangelists left. One of them, Ray Taylor, was asked to take a leadership role in 1950. Two years later, he was appointed National Director; a ministry heâ€™d hold for 37-years. Under Taylorâ€™s leadership, the ministry regained stability following the war, students began entering training; ministry projects and bases were launched as need presented itself; and the first female Evangelist was commissioned in 1967. This ministry has been the beginning for many in ministry across the country. Some serving only a brief season before being called to other roles, while others served for decades.
All have identified that their training has been instrumental in their compassion and commitment to their communities knowing Jesus as well as their embodiment of the servant-heart of Christ. In 2009, under the leadership of Bruce Smith, the ministry prayerfully discerned changing its name from Church Army in Canada to Threshold Ministries. The new name seemed appropriate as Threshold Ministries works to create open thresholds between the love and support of the Church, and the needs and brokenness of people in need of a connection with Godâ€™s love. The name embodies the graced history of the ministry and the shared vision for our future.
Mildred & Arthur Casey, 1936.
A Mandate At the time of launch in Canada, we were given a clear mandate, which was included in our original charter:
(a) ...to win souls for Christ by providing the parochial clergy with trained evangelists, captains and mission sisters and other lay agents who shall assist them in developing the evangelizing powers of the laity;
(b) ...to preach the need of real conversion, holiness of heart and life and loyal and intelligent churchmanship, such work to be conducted free from party spirit, solely on Church lines and, where possible, under Diocesan supervision;
(d) ...to establish and maintain as a part of its regular church or charitable work at such place or places as the directors may, from time to time, determine, homes, night shelters and other refuges for the poor;
Linda & Reed Fleming
(Left - Right) Shawn Branch (National Director), Brian Metzger (Adjunct Lecturer), Dr. Brad Jersak (Adjunct Lecturer)
Volunteers at Street Hope Whitehorse.
Rod BrantFrancis & friend
Eden & Carolyn McAuley
IDENTITY OUR PRESENT STORY In 2016, our ministry would appear different than it did during Carlile’s time – formal uniforms, titles and being strictly connected to one denomination are no longer a reality. While being founded by a cleric, for much of our history, the role of commissioned Evangelist was restricted to lay-people. Our missional community supports those who are lay-people, as well as bishops/apostles, priests/pastors and deacons from a variety of denominations. These leadership roles in the Church have offered an expanded mission field through which we are able to reach individuals and equip the Body of Christ. Threshold Ministries remains connected and rooted within the Anglican Communion. For many, the reality of the Kingdom of God is seeing a removal of denominational barriers that once separated us. Today, we are privileged to be part of sharing resources across these lines; congregations joining together to reach those outside the Church. Jesus prayed that the body of believers “may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” (John 17:21) Threshold Ministries is privileged to be an instrument of drawing the body together. We have been honoured to be part of the formation and training of hundreds of individuals across the country and, through partnership with our sister organizations, beyond into the US and Jamaica.
Our Mandate Threshold Ministriesâ€™ mandate remains consistent to the one that our first leaders set before us. Although we have updated the language, you will notice that we remain deeply committed to our roots.
Prepare We are called to prepare individuals for evangelistic ministry to serve the Church, through both traditional and non-traditional forms of ministry.
Provide We are called to provide resources to individuals and congregations across the country to assist them in reaching out into their neighbourhoods and communities.
Provoke We are called to provoke the Church, to remind it of its primary call to preach the Good News of Jesus, to baptize and disciple believers and to equip the saints for ministry.
Canadian culture and society look very different today than it did in the 20s & 30s when the vision was being laid out. Threshold Ministries continues to respond to invitations to help bring transformation to communities. Our Evangelists serve in a variety of ministry contexts but remain committed to living out this mandate as part of their formation and training. This is part of the DNA of our Evangelists.
Our Evangelists In the early days, our evangelists were welcomed to a house in downtown Toronto, participated in a one-year program – basics of the faith and ministry and then sent out to do ministry. Often, they were sent out to areas where the Church could not find clergy to go. It was known and understood that our Evangelists would go where they were called. Overtime the quality and format of our training expanded and we began to equip the evangelists-in-training in a more focused approach – looking to discern the gifts God has blessed them with and seeing how that connects to their calling as an evangelist. Today, our Evangelists face a variety of situations upon the completion of their training: • some are salaried by a congregation or mission; • some raise their own support for ministry; • some are hired through grants or contract partnerships; • some volunteer their time and do not require a stipend; • some are retired and fully engaged in ministry; and • some are employed through tent making positions. This can make for a challenging act of pastoral care for our Evangelists – planning retreats, gatherings, etc… and negotiating through a variety of circumstances. Our Evangelists, despite this potential challenge, recognize the importance of fellowship and support and work hard to ensure that they are present for gatherings of the missional community.
(Left - Right) Catherine Murkin, Winnie Ollerhead, Lisa BrantFrancis, Michelle Simons
At one time, they functioned primarily as an assistant or under a clerics leadership; today our Evangelists are:
• leading congregations;
• serving as outreach coordinators;
• children and youth evangelists;
• community evangelists;
• institutional chaplains;
• denominational leaders;
• and the list continues to grow.
There is no archetype for what a Threshold Ministries’ Evangelist looks like. The beautiful dynamic that holds us together is our commitment to our mandate, our Rule of Life and the desire to see lives transformed.
Our Community In 2016, after two-years of discernment and conversation, Threshold Ministries moved from being strictly an evangelistic organization to a Missional Community. What does that mean? It affects how we deal and work with each other. It confirms our commitment to walking and journeying together and living out the vision that our Founder had back in 1882. In May 2016, at our national gathering, we saw the launch of the Threshold Ministries Missional Community.
During this time, our Evangelists renewed the vows and promises made during their commissioning as well as a commitment to the community. What does that look like? In addition to our National Director, who also shares the role of Mission Leader for the Community and oversees the operations and the leadership of the ministry; we have appointed a Dean of Community who is responsible for the pastoral care of the Community and oversees the vocational discernment of our future members of the Community. With this development, we are able to serve and care for those who have been called to be an evangelist; we are not longer limited to those who have gone through our training and been commissioned by this ministry. Gaining on the richest of the historic models of religious communities, we now have accessibility for membership through:
• Commissioned: those who complete our full training program and follow the traditional model of discernment for ministry with us;
• Covenanted: those who share our charism and commitment for evangelism and reaching those outside the Church, but have not completed our training; • Coworker: the volunteers and support staff who serve alongside our Evangelists; • Companions: those who are commited to this ministry and share its vision – whether through prayerful and/or financial support.
Our Rule of Life Threshold Ministries is a dispersed evangelistic community. We seek to follow the vision for ministry as displayed by our founder, Wilson Carlile CH. We are historically rooted within the Anglican Communion, while connected to the whole of the Body of believers who follow Jesus Christ. We desire, together,
• to do the work of an evangelist in the power of the Holy Spirit, caring for people by word and action;
• to order our lives after the example of Christ, and to allow nothing in our personal relationships and behavior, which would hinder us in making God’s love real to other people; • to maintain a rule about spiritual discipline and devotion and the stewardship of time and money; • to undertake such study as will increase our understanding of the message of God to the people and situations to which we are sent; • to be faithful members of a local church and to work for Christian unity. • to work and pray for the effectiveness of Threshold Ministries and to promote sound relationships with colleagues. Information on joining the Missional Community or have questions related to this can be directed to our Dean of Community: email@example.com • (506) 642-2210 www.missionalcommunity.ca
Evangelists & Volunteers at the 2016 National Gathering.
Our Mission Upholding our mandate, Threshold Ministries is, in 2016: • serving in 6 denominations; • has over 60 commissioned evangelists in active ministry roles; • is represented in every territory and province, with the exception of Saskatchewan; • has partnerships with other evangelistic ministries and organizations – looking for opportunities for collaborations; • has over 800 individuals who financially give to ensure that viability of this ministry. This accounts for 75% of the income, with the other 25% comes through contracts or salaries.
We are continuing to produce and provide resources to the Church
• in 2014, we launched our Stepping into Evangelism book as a tool to help people develop and craft their story, and finding tools and ways that they can share Jesus with their neighbours;
• we have taken this book and developed a workshop which can used in the context of a congregation or cluster of congregations to mobilize and equip anyone to become an evangelist; • we are often invited to lead mission weekend/ seminars. This is a great opportunity for an Evangelist to come in for a brief period and offer a motivational or challenging message for the area or to serve as a teaching mission. We have always been on the fringes in the community – operating shelters or hostels, community chaplaincies, working with ex-offenders and incarcerated individuals, providing food and emergency supplies to those on the streets, relocating to remote and isolated communities. Why? Two simple reasons:
1. It is a willingness, similar to that of the OT prophet Isaiah – “Here I am! Send me!” (Isaiah 6:8)
2. We genuinely believe that people’s lives can be better being in a living relationship with Christ.
PURPOSE DIRECTION The challenge for any parachurch organization, and home-based missionary is to constantly be prepared to evaluate, grow, adjust and respond. We have been similar to a “little-big ship” – we cover a wide area of surface but are able to turn around when needed. Our leadership works hard to be attentive to the leading of the Holy Spirit as we set the course for the next days ahead.
Training – Threshold School of Ministry Our new training model, which has taken shape in the form of Threshold school of Ministry, grew out of a need to adjust our methodology for training evangelists; a desire to help train others for contextual ministry; and a desire to create an income generating stream that would help subsidize the costs of the national office. In 2016, the new program was launched, in partnership with St Stephen’s University, marking the first time our training program would be fully accredited, offering a university degree. More and more, this became an important and strategic factor for future partnership and opportunities for our evangelists. The program is a 3-year modular program, involving an internship, assignments and classroom time with highly skilled academic practitioners. Successful graduates will finish with either a diploma or Masters of Ministry in Cultural Engagement, which can lead to their commissioning or employment through another group. Visit: www.tsom.ca for more information.
This model not only opens new doors for us for partnership, but also creates an income-generating stream that will permit donations to be fully accessible to the mission field.
THRESHOLD school of ministry
Evangelists at the 2016 National Gathering.
Resourcing In order to continue to stay on-top of changes and opportunities that today’s culture presents us with, we will need to continue to provide relevant and tested resources to individuals and the Church. Over the next 5years, we will continue to invest in this area of our ministry, inviting our Evangelists to offer their wisdom and experience to the wider Church. These will include: • ministry insights and ideas that can easily be implemented; • video instruction and encouragement;
• study and small group resources;
• further training and workshop opportunities in communities across the country.
The need and the opportunities are endless. We will need to ensure that we are able to receive funding targeted for resource production.
The Mission Field Ministry Projects One of the realities of society is that people who have not been exposed to the Church are less likely to just walk-in. The Field of Dreams approach to evangelism and church growth is no longer working (ie: the notion that by virtue of having a church building, people will eventually walk through the doors). For many years, we have been exploring what it would look like to create Christian community that was outside, but connected to, the traditional context. These have been largely successful and afforded people the opportunity to engage and wrestle with truths about identity, self-worth, value and engagement. Over the coming years, we envision a group trend of planting a new ministry project each year in a targeted city. These ministry projects will need to be well equipped and formed to ensure longevity and continuity in the face of possible transfer of leadership. On average, each ministry program can cost upward of $100,000 annually for operation, salaries and related expenses. This will involve an average increase of $100,000/ year in donations realized through new donors and seed grants.
Evangelists Additionally, there is a great need for evangelists to be equipped and resources made available to serve in the Church’s leadership. In St Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, he outlined the role and leadership of this burgeoning Christian community. Traditionally, most denominations have encompassed many of these roles into apostolic and pastoral responsibilities. As we know, God formed us with certain gifts and qualities to help encourage and support one another. Therefore it is natural for the Church to cry out for more evangelists to work alongside the apostles and pastors to strengthen and guide the Church. We are in need of recognizing the role of the “evangelist” (a gospeler in our communities), to work alongside and see those lost and searching be connected to the Truth and welcomed home. More and more, we are receiving requests from congregations and bishops for evangelists – to go into communities or come alongside and help mold/train local individuals. Our desire is to see more and more individuals equipped and released to do this type of ministry.
OUR FOUNDATION STATEMENT OF FAITH As evangelists in Threshold Ministries, we are committed to the following statements that outline our shared belief: We believe in the Trinity of persons as comprising the Godhead, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, in their diversity of manifestation and their unity of substance as one God. We believe in the good news of the Kingdom of God - the Creator God who loves his fallen creation and plans to restore it to wholeness through Christ. We call people to celebrate the glorious legacy they have by virtue of being created in God’s image, and the potential to be fully alive in Christ, through repentance and faith. We believe that the divine and incarnate Son Jesus Christ is the highest and ultimate revelation of God and God’s will for us. God has, in Christ’s atoning and substitutionary sacrifice, reconciled the world to himself. Christ has won, by virtue of his death and resurrection, the ultimate victory over evil and sin. Jesus Christ is he whom we proclaim as Lord over all, in whom all creation will find its fulfillment and wholeness. We believe in the good news that God transforms lives through the gift of the Holy Spirit who works in the world, through the Church, to bring God’s new creation into being, as manifested in faith and in the practice of that faith. This plan of salvation we proclaim by word and deed as being the means whereby God will bring about the ultimate destiny and consummation of the whole creation, all reconciled in Christ. We believe that the office of Evangelist is God-ordained. We believe Evangelists are called to exercise the unique role, empowered by the Holy Spirit, of calling people to a
first time repentance and faith and, along with Apostles, Prophets, Pastors and Teachers, to disciple Christians, so they may exercise their ministries for the building up of Godâ€™s kingdom. (Ephesians 4: 11-16) We are committed to the building of relationships with those to whom we minister the Gospel. We call people to a positive affirmation of who they can be in Christ, facing him as Judge but also as Redeemer, by whose love, grace and mercy is the divine intention for all of humanity. We believe the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments to be the authoritative record of the Word of God, as received by the Church, along with the historic Creeds, interpreted in their historical and orthodox sense, directed towards the faith and amendment of life in those guided by the Holy Spirit. Approved by the Board of Directors - December 5, 2008
OUR LEADERSHIP OUR BOARD We have been blessed with men and women from across the country who share our passion and are willing to offer their time and expertise to provide oversight and support for this ministry. Our board members come from across the country, and are a mix of individuals serving in both the ministry and corporate sectors. They gather quarterly to discuss plans and development for this ministry and offer counsel to the National Director. Typically, board members serve a three-year term, with the option for re-election. In addition to a clearance check, board members must be willing to sign and adhere to our Statement of Faith as well as a Commitment Document. The board operates in an advisory/policy capacity, employing the National Director to oversee and ensure the management of the ministry and implementation of the vision.
NATIONAL DIRECTOR In 2012, Shawn C. Branch was appointed as National Director of Threshold Ministries. The youngest leader in the ministryâ€™s history, he has been tasked with leading and supporting its evangelists and volunteers across Canada. Beyond this, he offers support and helps with missional planning for denominational leaders across the country. Shawn grew up in New Brunswick and came to faith at 16, after having been invited to a Christian youth rally by friends. Prior to this, the Church was nothing more than a curiosity and vague distant memory from a few weekends with his grandparents. Jumping in with both feet, he soon after got involved in youth groups, and the local youth centre, working with at-risk children. Commissioned as an Evangelist in 2004, Shawn has been working with congregations, summer camps and regional leaders to help offer leadership for inviting children and youth to consider the Good News of the Gospel. His passion in ministry is to see individuals released in their vocational calling and to be empowered to be agents of change in their communities. Licensed as an Evangelist in the Anglican church, Shawn is committed to working with all denominations who are looking to strengthen their outreach and commitment to the Great Commission.
Shawn C. Branch (National Director)
PARTNERSHIP Why Give? In today’s economy, people are understandably careful about the areas that they invest in or give their money to. Given the vast amount of options that people have for charitable giving, we recognize that more and more we are being asked, “Why should I give to Threshold Ministries?” Threshold Ministries relies on the generous gifts from our donors. Since our beginning, we have not received guaranteed funding from the Church, but have been blessed with very generous individuals who believe in what we are doing and share the vision we have fo reaching Canada with the Good News.
How to Give? There are several options to consider if you would like to make a financial gift to our ministry:
• you can mail-in a one-time gift;
• you can donate online through either CanadaHelps.org or on our website: www.thresholdministries.ca/donate; • you can setup Pre-Authorized Giving, which will enable your gift to be debited from your account bi-weekly or monthly; • you can Leave a Legacy gift from your estate. If you have questions about how you can give or would like to make a gift over the phone, please don’t hesitate to contact our Financial Officer:
(506) 642-2210 • firstname.lastname@example.org
Our ministry has an annual audit, by chartered professional accountants, and is a member of the Canadian Council of Christian Charities, as well as the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada.
OUR HEARTBEAT Threshold Ministries works to create open thresholds between the love and support of the Church, and the privation and brokenness of people in need of a connection with God. Caring for people through word and action, we see lives transformed and communities changed. Threshold Ministries is an evangelistic organization, and a Missional Community spanning over 9 countries, 6 denominations and formed by over 60 commissioned evangelists in active ministry roles. Our Evangelists serve in a variety of contexts, in the church, on the streets and in our communities. We are committed to building relationships with those to whom we minister the Gospel. We are privileged to be an instrument of drawing the Body together. Our mission is 3-fold; to prepare individuals for evangelistic ministry, provide resources to individuals and congregations to assist them in reaching out into their communities, and to provoke the Church to be missional-minded. To do this, Threshold Ministries relies on the generous gifts from our donors. We are honored to have been instrumental in the formation and training hundreds of individuals across the country and, through partnership with our sister organizations, beyond into the US and Jamaica. Today, we continue to train more for contextual ministry through Threshold School of Ministry. For more information, visit www.thresholdministries.ca or call (506) 642-2210.
THRESHOLD MINISTRIES (506) 642-2210 thresholdministries.ca 105 Mountain View Drive Saint John, New Brunswick E2J 5B5 © 2016 THRESHOLD MINISTRIES • All rights reserved.